Vanguard sets ETFs trading costs to zero

Vanguard sets 1,800 ETFs’ trading costs to zero today: Time to move all your money over?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Investing, Personal finance

About a month ago, Vanguard surprised clients and investment advisors (of which I am both) with the announcement that starting in August 2018 (today), Vanguard would offer free trading on almost 1,800 exchange traded funds (ETFs), all but a handful of which are those of Vanguard’s competitors.  Although I have earlier argued that even paying […]

How to read a mutual fund fact sheet - 5 key points

How to read a fund factsheet – 5 key points to avoiding a $5,000 mistake

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Education, Investing

A fund factsheet is the “nutritional information” of the investment fund, summing up the objectives, holdings, fees, risks, and performance of a mutual fund you might choose to invest in.  I rarely meet an investor that reads the entire offering document or prospectus of most stocks or funds they buy, and even the “executive summary” […]

Building portfolios using ETFs instead of mutual funds

3 main reasons I invest in ETFs instead of mutual funds

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Investing

I first started using ETFs in the early 2000s, when iShares was aggressively launching several new ETFs, and marketing the line of single-country ETFs they had launched back in 1996.   The Spyder ETF “SPY” has already been around for almost a decade at that point, and sector SPDRs had already been around since 1998, but […]

IRS Form 8621 for PFICs (Foreign Mutual Funds)

PFIC: How Non-US Mutual Funds are a 4-letter word to Americans Overseas

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Investing

Many Americans living outside the US have visited their local bank to be told that they are not allowed to purchase investment products outside the US, often without being told any more details as to why not.  While Americans can and should directly own investments outside the US (I personally own and buy for US […]

Vanguard Stock Mutual Funds PB vs ROE ratios March 2018

Top Vanguard Mutual Funds for Enhanced Asset Allocation

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Investing

Vanguard is synonymous with low-cost, passive investing.  Here I present some charts showing some metrics that can be used to enhance an asset allocation of the top Vanguard mutual funds even among these broadly diversified, passive funds. Despite my disagreements with him, Jack Bogle remains one of the foundational figures of today’s investing world I […]

G for got it - what I hope a 10 year old child will say after buying their 10 first stocks

10 first stocks to buy a 10-year old to start investing early

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Education, Investing, Personal finance

My latest article describes how to choose the 10 first stocks to buy a 10-year old, and why I think it’s important to start kids investing in individual companies rather than mutual funds from an early age. As I disclose: I bought Coca-cola for my older child and PepsiCo for my younger child because they […]

How GFM makes investing simple

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Personal finance, Saving

What is the big difference between investing with GFM vs investing with any of the other financial advisors and brokers in the large financial services industry?  This was the question I aimed to answer in a single picture. In short, I aim to make investing as direct and simple as possible.  In the below picture, […]

The 2%/50% rule: How fees and under-diversification can cost half a pension

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Saving

In my previous post, I mentioned that one of the top 10 lessons I learned in my first 10 years of investing my salary savings, bonuses, and 401(k) contributions is to beware of high-fee, low-service mutual funds and financial products.  As a professional myself, I of course understand the need for professionals who manage and […]

How I invested my first 10 years of savings, bonuses and 401(k)/IRA contributions and top 10 lessons learned

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Investing, Personal finance

Of all the habits I started early in my career, I would rank the habit of paying myself first, saving at least 10% of my income, saving rather than spending 100% of bonuses, and avoiding consumer debt as close to #1 as having paid off well and being well worth teaching my children and grandchildren. […]

Invest by Model or by Judgement? Join the #Buyside Debate @LipperLeaders @thomsonreuters

Posted Leave a commentPosted in News

Thomson Reuters advertised the question of whether predictive modeling or human judgement is more important to generating alpha by fund managers on the site BuysideDebate.com As of the time I cast my vote, opinions still seem evenly split, but with more conviction on the model side than the human judgement side (and I doubt that’s […]